Music & Entertainment


Itzhak Perlman

Lesson time 6:57 min

Meet your new instructor: Grammy Award-winning violinist and conductor Itzhak Perlman. Mr. Perlman tells you how this class will differ from traditional violin master classes and how through teaching others, you can teach yourself.

Itzhak Perlman
Teaches Violin
In his first-ever online class, virtuoso violin player Itzhak Perlman breaks down his techniques for improved practice and powerful performances.
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[MUSIC PLAYING] ITZHAK PERLMAN (VOICEOVER): I've been with music since I was practically born. It's my language. It's my way of life. [MUSIC PLAYING] To be a musician, it's almost like to be a magician. You have to do certain things that the listener doesn't know what you're doing. It's not easy to do. [MUSIC PLAYING] Think of yourself as a painter with a palette full of paints. You have choices. [MUSIC PLAYING] They are all at your disposal on the violin. [MUSIC PLAYING] - I want everybody to come in really fortissimo. ITZHAK PERLMAN (VOICEOVER): Teaching has been a very important part of my musical life, and I feel that it has helped me with my playing. Like I always say, when you teach others, you teach yourself. [MUSIC PLAYING] [APPLAUSE AND CHEERING] - Those steps-- you know, some things that are really easy for you are real hard for me. [MUSIC PLAYING] - Yeah, but some things are easy for you that are hard for me. [MUSIC PLAYING] ITZHAK PERLMAN: Violin is a very challenging instrument-- very challenging. You know, when you think about-- even when you think about a stringed instrument, such as a guitar, you have at least some threads-- you know that thing over there that you can put your fingers, and you know more or less where you are. Violin-- nothing. It's like playing by braille. You know, you are supposed to play by feel. So comparing a beginner on the piano and the beginner on the violin-- who can make a better sound right away? Well, guess. Of course, the pianist, because on the piano, you know, you press the finger on the key. Immediately, something mechanical goes on there in the piano, and there is a little hammer, and your string is tuned. You touch the string, and you've got the sound. If you try to do it on the violin, an immediate-- getting a sound even is-- is like this. That's that sound. You have to do so many things in order to make this successful. So it's very challenging. - All right, try from here. [MUSIC PLAYING] ITZHAK PERLMAN (VOICEOVER): At first, I did a lot of normal master classes, which is one on one in front of an audience. - Ah, ah, ah, more, more, more body-- da, de, da, de. Now you go. Don't rush. Don't rush this time. Plenty of time. ITZHAK PERLMAN: The old-fashioned master classes is when the student plays and the teacher says, oh, that's very nice. Let me show you how it goes. And then the teacher plays. And he says, now you go ahead and play it. So the teacher plays, and it's like great, you know. And then the poor student has to-- now you play that. So you know, that's-- that's not teaching. That's basically showing. And, of course, you deal with a lot of kids who have fantastic ears. So when they hear something, they imitate it. And that's why I don't like-- I try to stay away from showing too much because I want whenever they do something to be their own, not because they heard somebody ...

Play with passion

The world’s reigning virtuoso violin player, Itzhak Perlman performs for presidents, royals, and classical music lovers around the world. Now the beloved Juilliard instructor and 15-time Grammy Award winner brings his passion for teaching to a wide audience for the first time. Learn fundamental techniques, practice strategies, and how to add richness and depth to your sound. Give your most dynamic performance yet.


Students give MasterClass an average rating of 4.7 out of 5 stars.

Was good to recall my music scholl time, when a child. Found the majority of things said familiar and very close to me and true to my understanding. Good refreshing that comes out of Mr.P's honest and clear style

please! invite more soloist come to this party!

This was one of best Master Classes and I would love for more violin lessons. He is an exceptional musician and teacher. Thank you

Excellent lessons with detailed explanations and good humour!


A fellow student

Nothing unknown. But I have to revive all. I realized, that I had a very good violin education


Can anyone please take a look at the subtitles ? It is totally off. It does matter to me. Thanks.

Leah H.

A lovely video composition engaging my interest and eagerness to work through the masterclass with Maestro Perlman. A very nice intro also to the Maestro imparting his warmth and love of the violin. Really enjoyed the graphic designs and I was heartened to hear il Maestro emphasis that he teaches not by 'showing' but by giving us the tools and know how to progress. I am happy to be partaking in this Masterclass. Thank you.


I like this first lesson because it was very engaging. Your violin playing when you were young was fantastic!

Cameron J.

Hi everyone. Loving this Masterclass so far. I produce music and dj and am using this as inspiration and the small piano that I play will hopefully be imbued with the full self and life that Perlman brings to his music. I was wondering.... for those in Timbaland’s, Deadmau5’s and Armin’s class could we have some samples of you playing to work with in our production and composition? I would love for ways to connect the classes and communities here and as I write for violin and play it in Ableton, working with the emotive sounds of your violin would be wonderful.

Janet C.

I retired in January and when my friends asked “what will you do now?” I just knew. I wanted to learn to play the violin. When I saw the opportunity to learn from Itzhak Perlman?!? WOW! I look forward to the community and the inspiration to help my lessons here at home to be even more meaningful.

Richard C.

What a privilege to learn at the feet of the master! I was fortunate to grow up next door to a brilliant woman who was a violinist in the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. Back in the early 60s, when I was 8 or 9 years old, she insisted that I attend a particular concert, because the guest soloist was a young musician who she believed was destined to be the greatest violinist of our time. It was Itzhak Perlman.

Justa C.

I am thrilled that Itzhak Perlman is teaching a Master Class! I look forward to seeing what wondrous things I can learn from Mr. Perlman about my favorite musical instrument, the violin :)...thank you!!


This is absolutely fantastic. I'm a 50+ year old who started because my daughter is doing Suzuki lessons, and thought I'd learn to play as well, having always loved the instrument. Being able to learn from such a legend is wonderful. I've finished Grade 3 and my teacher suggested I try playing the viola as well (big hands) - so I'm looking forward to applying everything I learn here to that too. The PDF is also full of great stuff. Bravo!

Rob H.

I really enjoyed the Introduction. I think one of the hardest things for adults learning to play the violin or learning anything new, is letting go of our past. For most of our lives we are shown how to do just about everything you have ever learned. To teach without showing is a hard thing to do. Especially when the student only expects to be shown. I am looking forward to this master class. "Wax on Wax off"